The greatest endurance race in the world is the ultimate mix of high-speed action, drama and skill and the 1981 running of the Le Mans 24 Hours Race was no exception.
More than 50 thoroughbred racecars set off for almost 3,000 miles of fascinating competition at the Circuit de la Sarthe, with speeds along the infamous Mulsanne straight topping 230mph.
Le Mans legends Jacky Ickx and Derek Bell would lead the Porsche charge in the amazing works 936, but, as always, the 24 Hours Race had attracted an incredibly high quality of entry.
Drivers like Hans Joachim Stuck, Jochen Mass, Hurley Haywood, Eddie Cheever, Jean Rondeau, Bob Wolleck and more would be among those bidding to prevent Ickx taking a remarkable fifth Le Mans win.
Tragically, 1981 entered the record books as the first year in Le Mans history a safety car had been deployed, to slow the field while the aftermath of Thierry Boutsen's horrific 230mph crash was cleared. Shockingly, the safety car was deployed again a few laps later following Jean Louis Lafosse's fatal accident.
This review of the 1981 Le Mans 24 Hour Race brings you the full, action-packed story, plus the colour and atmosphere which surrounds this amazing event.